World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Further Talks On Forced Labour In Myanmar Canned

UN Labour Agency Mission Calls Off Further Talks On Forced Labour In Myanmar

A high-level United Nations labour agency mission to Myanmar to look into allegations of the use of forced labour has called off further discussions because its visit did not include meetings necessary for it to successfully complete its mandate.

The very High-Level Team (vHLT), appointed in November by International Labour Organization (ILO) Director-General Juan Somavia to evaluate the authorities’ attitude at the highest level towards eliminating forced labour and assess their determination to continue cooperation with the agency, visited Yangon, Myanmar’s capital, from 21 to 23 February.

“The Myanmar authorities were fully aware of these terms of reference before the mission departed for Yangon,” the three-member team said in a departure statement. “However, the mission was informed on its arrival that for various reasons linked to the National Convention the programme did not include the meetings that would have enabled it to successfully complete its mandate as it understood it.

“Under the circumstances, and after having discussions and making its views known to the Minister for Labour and to the Prime Minister, the mission decided that there would be no point at this stage to have more in-depth discussions at the technical level on the concrete steps outlined in those meetings which in the mission’s view could contribute to alleviating recent concerns expressed in the (ILO) Governing Body,” it added.

The mission, which will submit its report to the next Governing Body session in March, made public four clarifying points regarding matters under discussion, including the issuance of directives by the Defence Ministry to all units under its command not to requisition forced labour.

The other points were: re-commitment by the authorities to the terms of the joint plan of action on forced labour, including appointment of a high-level focal point in the army to deal with allegations that concern the army; re-commitment to freedom of movement of the ILO Liaison Officer; and additional measures that could build confidence vis-a-vis the people of Myanmar as regards possibilities to lodge complaints regarding forced labour.

The mission comprised Sir Ninian Stephen, former Governor General of Australia, Ruth Dreifuss, former President of the Swiss Confederation and Eui-yong Chung, former Chairman of the Governing Body of the ILO and member of the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea (ROK).

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news